tv CNN Newsroom CNN June 1, 2014 11:00am-12:01pm PDT
two people dead. allegations that phil mickelson is facing coming up. the last american soldier held hostage has left the middle east for the first time in five years he's a free man. we're expected to hear from bowe bergdahl's parents today. there's no word on his condition but defense secretary chuck hagel said that the rescue operation saved his life. he was recovered yesterday in a s.w.a.t. negotiated with qatar. five guantanamo detainees were released. that has some u.s. lawmakers up in arms. but for bergbahl's parents and his hometown of idaho, it's just
a celebration. ed lavandera has more. >> reporter: at 1:00 mountain time, the parents of bergdahl will be arriving here in boise, idaho, this coming on the day after president obama gave them the news that nearly five years in captivity, their son sergeant bowe bergdahl will be coming home. he's in germany getting medical treatment. it's not exactly when he will be reunified with his parents but he will be transported to a medical center in san antonio, texas, and perhaps the reunification with his parents will occur there. we'll know later today when all of that will happen. here in the state of idaho, a community that has followed with great interest the plight of sergeant bowe bergdahl and has watched with the intensity and struggle that his parents have
been through for the last five years. the community is very excited and emotional about the homecoming that they will be celebrating in the weeks ahead. again, bob and jenny bergdahl expected to arrive here in the next few hours in the state of idaho and they will want to show their thanks and appreciation and gratitude to the many people that have supported them for the last five years as they have gone through the ordeal. whether or not they will take questions or shed any light about what has been going on behind the scenes, we'll have to wait and see. at this point, all of the family and friends are simply ecstatic and they can't wait to wrap their arms around their son. dana? >> the hospital in germany where bergdahl is being treated is the largest hospital outside of the united states. our senior international
correspondent nick robertson is in germany. give us a sense of what is expected to happen. what does the reintegration process look like? >> reporter: yeah. it doesn't have a time frame. i guess that's the headline here. it really depends on sergeant bergdahl himself. there are several components for this. part of it is medical to make sure that he's physically in good condition. part of it is psychological. part of it is to meet the needs of the department of defense, what time sensitive intelligence information can they glean from sergeant bergdahl right now, is there anything useful there. also, what lessons from his experiences can be learned from future situations. so a lot of things there but some of it is going to be as simple as trying to get him to re-engage with -- that he can predict some of the things that
are going to happen, that he can begin to take a little more control of his life, tried and tested because this has been put in practice on contractors that have been kidnapped in ethiopia 2007 and contractors in colombia and in 2010. the aim is to allow and help sergeant bergdahl get back into family life, get back into his own life again, feel comfortable blee and essentially be able to move forward. we're told that the staff at landstuhl here will be very sympathetic and will take this at the pace that is right for him. what we're being told now is how long that will be, it just isn't clear, dana. >> it's nice to know that they are going to let him go at his own pace. we're talking about him in
germany but also we want to go to what happened in guantanamo bay. detainees who were freed there. we have pictures of them but we want to tell our viewers that these are photos obtained by wikileaks. we want to show you what is up there and what is out there. but with regard to who these people are, nic, tell our viewers about them because we have heard from some members of congress and in particular that they were not run of the mill detainees, that these are serious terrorists, people who were responsible for the death of thousands of people. >> sure. these are senior taliban figures. back when there was a civil war in afghanistan, before the september 11th attacks, they were policed pretty much right after, within a year of those
attacks. they include a former interior minister, taliban interior minister, a former deputy defense minister, former governor of several afghan provinces under the taliban. so these are, by no means, small players. these are people that the taliban have designated that they want free. this is typical of the taliban. they will capture people, people like sergeant bowe bergdahl and use it as leverage to get their own people free. so these are key people for them. they are being released into qatari custody to, go to qatar, not back to afghanistan. the qataris will watch over them. of course, that could be very damaging because the taliban is still actively trying to kill
u.s. servicemen and women in afghanistan today. so all of these questions out in the open but this is typical taliban tactics. they kept bowe bergdahl until they could get what they wanted. dana? >> nic robertson, thank you. the leverage is one of the many questions being raised in washington, about whether terrorist organizations will use americans as leverage in the future and if this sets a precedent, the white house is standing by the swath. i spoke to the congressman that oversees the pentagon. that committee is in the house and he says the s.w.a.t. did not go by the books. quiet! mom has a headache! had a headache! but now, i& don't. excedrin is fast. in fact for some, relief starts in just 15 minutes. excedrin. headache. gone. pcentury link provides reliable yit services like multi-layered
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soldier was freed by the taliban, there are mixed feelings from washington. sergeant bowe bergdahl was released for the release of five taliban being held in guantanamo bay. again, lawmakers are saying, at least some of them, the swap sets a dangerous precedent. erin mcpike is live at the white house. national security adviser susan rice spoke to our candy crowley on "the state of the union."
how does they defend this move? >> republicans and mike rogers has specifically said that they are angry that the united states was negotiating with terrorists. candy asked susan rice directly this morning and here's how she responded. >> we owe a great debt to the government of qatar. he was being held by the taliban and we had an opportunity to bring him back. he's back in the hands safely of the united states and that's a great thing. >> when we are in battles with terrorists and terrorists take an american prisoner, that prisoner is still a u.s. servicemen or woman. we did that and that's to be celebrated. >> now, there are conditions here and the qatari of government will see that these detainee movements are limited. >> erin, republican lawmakers say, look, theed administration
was not followed. i know there was a signing statement that they think the president have that gives the white house a loophole. how did susan rice explain that? >> congress has been briefed on the situation and they were aware that this opportunity existed but here's how rice explained the reasoning and what they actually did. >> when the deal was done and sergeant bergdahl was in u.s. custody is when we began making notifications to congress. >> the congress was notified when bergdahl was in american hands which is before the prisoners had left. >> now, the other point rice made was that the u.s. did not move quickly, they would lose their opportunity, dana. >> erin mcpike, thank you so much. joining me by phone for an exclusive interview is representative buck mckeon.
before we start to talk, i want our viewers to hear some of the statement that you and your counterpart in the senate, james inhofe released yesterday. you said, "america has maintained a prohibition on negotiating with terrorists for good reason. trading five seen nor taliban leaders from detention in guantanamo bay for bergdahl's release may have an effect on our forces and all americans. our terrorist adversaries now have a strong incentive to capture americans. that would put our forces in afghanistan and around the world at even greater. you say it's not only dangerous but illegal? >> well, i think it is pretty obvious that we have never done this before and now we have said a precedent. the precedent has set a precedent.
you know, he has violated the law and floundered the constitution so and then times, we have real concerns about this. he has said that they are going to close guantanamo. well, cross has passed a law and he has signed a law saying that he will not close guantanamo. whatever his desires are, that does not conform to the law and he is the chief administrator of the law of the nation and should uphold his constitutional obligation to follow the law. and the law states that before anyone can be released from guantanamo, congress should be notified at least 30 days before. you know, they are trying to parse words here and say that, well, they did let us know that something might happen. they are not following the law. they know they are not following the law. it's been a day now and they
still haven't told us details or anything that is going on. we are getting our information other than the very brief notify asian that we're getting most of our information now from the media. these are five very dangerous guys that should not be sent out -- should not leave guantanamo, should not leave our custody, should not have the opportunity to get back into this fight to either kidnap or harm more of our men and women in uniform. >> chairman mckeon, i want to get to more about who was released but let's stay on the question of congressional notification and whether, as you said, the white house simply broke the law. you heard susan rice say on cnn this morning that they did notify congress and the man that you and the department have oversight over, the defense secretary chuck hagel, said the same thing. listen to what he said this
morning. >> as to notify asian of congress, yes, there is a 30-day notification. i notified the appropriate committee leadership, different community leadership yesterday. that's part of the responsibility that i have as secretary of defense. >> now, you are the chairman of the house services committee, mr. mckeon. he is the defense secretary. if he notified the leadership, it would have to be you. did that conversation not happen? >> i have no personally spoken to the secretary and i'm not quibbling with that. he did let my staff director know yesterday that this had happened. the difference is, they notified us after the fact. a couple of days ago, my staff director received a call that there may be an important phone call and we should be alert for that happening. it didn't happen prior to
anything happening. the law states they are supposed to let us know 30 days before. we will be holding hearings in the very near future. i will be discussing this with other members of the committee. there is a constitution we abide by. there are three separations of power and when we pass the law and the president signs that law, we should -- he should by constitutional direction enforce that law. we know that he selectively seems to decide which laws he wants to enforce and i don't know -- he apparently was a law professor, taught the constitution, he understand it, should follow it. >> the administration points out that along with insuing the law that does require the administration to give congress 30-days notice, he also had a separate signing statement where
effectively said that in a case of national security, he can do something. they did that. but to be fair -- to be fair, a democratic president does that, george bush did that. so this is not -- this shouldn't be partisan. it's about what happens when somebody is in the executive branch and they use that power. >> hey, this is not partisan. i'm chairman of the house armed services committee. i run that committee on a very bipartisan basis. this law passed out of our committee last year with the vote of 59-2, both -- all but two democrats voted for that bill. and then it passed better than 3 to 1 margin on the floor and then passed finally through the house and the floor, the final -- the house and the senate. the final conference report. this year, our bill that is not
law yet, it did pass out of the committee on a vote of 61-0. and it passed on the floor, 325-97 or 98. we do our work in a bipartisan way. this had nothing to do with politics. it has to do with following the law. >> and on that i just want to -- >> if this were a republican president, i'd be saying the exact same thing. >> i just want to underscore, it's now more than 24 hours since this rescue has taken place. you still have not had a conversation with the defense secretary and you or your staff have not been briefed in exactly what went down? >> correct. >> let me move on to the whole question of why this happened now. susan rice told candy crowley on "state of the union" that the reason it had to happen quickly without informing congress is because sergeant bergdahl's health was deteriorating. do you believe that?
do you buy that? >> i don't know. like i say, we're getting our information from the media. they are willing to go on television and talk about things that they are not willing to brief the congress on. i just don't -- this happened in benghazi, almost the exact same thing. in fact, that was also ambassador rice. so i just think that their credibility in congress and in the nation and around the world is slipping greatly and the result is that we now have americans abroad that are at further risk, increased risk over what they were 24 hours ago or 48 hours ago. >> mr. chairman, one last question about the five detainees who were released from guantanamo bay, knowing what you know about them, how concerned are you? and i guess you don't have a lot
of information that you've been officially given from the administration but how concerned are you about them getting back on the battlefield? chuck hagel says that they have assurances that this is not a national security risk to the american people. >> well, i wish i could be that sure. this is one of the reasons why we passed this law. both republicans and democrats were concerned that gitmo detainees could re-enter the battlefield and harm american men and women. this is not acceptable. this was designed as a check on the administration because they have shown propensity in the past to not follow the laws that we have passed. this was to make sure that all policies were considered, the dangerous terrorists would not be able to do us harm again. one of the leaders of al qaeda
in yemen is a former gitmo detainee. and we know that there is a high recidivism rate and these five guys are all known to have -- most of them, if not all of them because we haven't received the information that we should have received, have blood on their hands. american blood. and to think that they would not re-enter the fight is ludicrous. >> mr. chairman, buck mckeon, thank you for joining us here exclusively. the house is in recess next week but, as you said, you're going to have hearings as soon as you get back. thank you for your insight today. we'll have much more on sergeant bergdahl's release later this hour. but first, a look at some of the other top stories making headlines today. a boston airplane crash kills all seven people on board.
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♪ norfolk southern how's that function? ♪ the ntsb will hold a news conference in the next hour on the deadly crash of a private plane. it went down and burned in a wooded area outside boston overnight. seven people were on board and there were no survivors. this is a picture from social media reporting to be the crash site. the plane caught fire shortly after taking off. among the dead is philadelphia media mogul. let's bring in brian stelter to talk about this. brian owned two big newspapers. this could have a big impact on
the newspapers, particularly in that big city. >> the timing is extraordinary and makes this story even sadder. it was only five days that he and his co-owner of the "enquirer" gained full control of the newspaper. this is after years of struggling for the famous philly enquirer. there were fights about who was the owner and editor and he came out ahead. the philly "enquirer" is so important to that community. it's the first thing that people read in the morning and this is a loss that the entire city is going to feel. they have quickly come out and said that louis' son drew will take his seat. it's a pending transaction for the "enquirer". >> brian stelter, thank you.
appreciate that. now, was the bowe bergdahl sw swap the right thing to do? up next, we'll talk to a former israeli ambassador to the u.s. about the politics and the risks of that decision. [ male announcer ] this is the cat that drank the milk... [ meows ] ...and let in the dog that woke the man who drove to the control room [ woman ] driverless mode engaged. find parking space. [ woman ] parking space found. [ male announcer ] ...that secured the data that directed the turbines that powered the farm that made the milk that went to the store that reminded the man to buy the milk that was poured by the girl who loved the cat. [ meows ] the internet of everything is changing everything. cisco. tomorrow starts here. the numbers are impressive. over 400,000 new private sector jobs... making new york state number two in the nation in new private sector job creation... with 10 regional development strategies
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basic principle and a foreign policy and that is a humanitarian consideration. and because qatar has confidence of all parts, it makes it easier for us to feel with. >> so was this prisoner swap the right thing to do? joining us is an ambassador. thank you for joining us. this is often companied by a great deal of hand wringing and one of the best known was an exchange of 1,000 palestinian prisoners. knowing that, how would you characterize how the u.s. handled this particular swap? >> first of all, always good to be with you, dana. it's a tough call. israel over the years has
exchanged 7,000 terrorists to secure the release of israeli prisoners and each time, indeed, it's a matter of not just a hand wringing but the street right below me was the same of a suicide bombings not too long ago. i lost a loved one, terrorist bombing. to release prisoners is very, very painful. on the other hand, we send these kids out to fight for us. god forbid they get captured, they have to know, we have to know that the state of israel will do everything possible to secure their release. either way, it's a painful decision. >> former u.n. ambassador susan rice, the national security adviser, was on cnn's state of the union earlier today. we want to play for you what she said about making this distinction among enemies, bringing home enemies and those
who are captive. >> it's very important for folks to understand, if we got into a situation where we said, you know, because of who has captured an american soldier on the battlefield we will leave that person behind, we would be in a whole new era for the safety of our personnel and for the nature of our commitment to our men and women in uniform so because it was the taliban that had them didn't mean that we had any less of an obligation to bring him back. >> i wonder what you make of that and also just the idea that many people here in the united states are up in arms. not so much about the concept and the theory of negotiating with terrorists but who these people five are, how significant they have been in the fight against the americans and the fact that they were the ones let go. >> again, in listening to susan rice, she could be the national security adviser of the state of israel as well. israel has used similar
rationals in making these prisoner releases. our young men and women should know that should they get captured, we will do everything to bring them back. but there's always a price to pay. releasing terrorists, many of them go back to committing acts of terror. it encourages further hostage taking. we know this from experience. there's always that tradeoff. and at the end of the day, every state involved in the fight against terror has to have this decision, this conversation among its own citizens and there's really no easy answer but, again, as susan rice says, our soldiers have to know that we're behind them all the way. >> it's interesting what you just said, that because you and your country have had experience with this kind of swap, you do think that it does set a precedent and does send a signal to terrorists in the future that this is something that they can do to get leverage for something
that they need? have you seen the negative result of this? >> we have seen the negative results. during the recent peace process, there was a deal to swap -- to release some 104 palestinian prisoners in israeli jails. they had killed 70 israelis, plus a foreign tourist, and they also executed a number of palestinians whom they accuse of collaboration. now, some of these terrorists are going to go back out. israel agreed to do this in order to get the peace process going. there's a tradeoff. maybe you coulded advance a pea process. again, no easy answers, unfortunately. >> and the defense secretary, susan rice, others have been saying today that they got assurances that these individuals who were released from guantanamo bay won't be a national security risk. you know the world in which we're talking about.
can they really have those kindses kinds of assurances? can they guarantee such a thing? >> i can't know and don't know the details of the greagreement between the united states government and qatari mediators. we know that, from our experience, when prisoners are released, some of them in fact go back to committing actins of terror and there's an interesting debate going on today in the government in israel whether a law will forbid release of terror prisoners who have blood on their hands, those that have killed israelis. >> we can learn a lot from the debate already been going on for years in your democracy there in israel. mr. am bobassador, always great see you. thank you for your insight. and in about 20 minutes
we're hoping to know more about bowe bergdahl's recovery. his parents will hold a news conference at the top of the hour and we'll bring that to you live. and the role that qatar played in the release of bowe bergdahl. we'll go live to richard quest who is in the middle east. three grams daily of beta-glucan... a soluable fiber from whole grain oat foods like cheerios can help lower cholesterol. and where can you find beta-glucan? in oats. and, they're yummy! i'm going back to being a kid now. thank you!
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officials do say that qatar played an important role and the taliban has a liaison office in qatar, a talk that could have been held. let's go to richard quest in doha. how much do we know about amir's involvement in bowe bergdahl's release? >> reporter: well, there was a press conference this morning with the german foreign minister where the barest details were given. he said that there have been long negotiations placed on principles which is the backbone of the foreign policy. when i asked the foreign minister why and how and what, he said, i'm not giving you any more details other than to say, we enjoy the confidence of both
parties and that made it easier to do the deal. but i wanted to show you this. look at this morning's "gulf times" newspaper. the lead story on the "gulf times" is qatar's heritage to go digital. look how this is expressed. obama thanks qatar for assistance as taliban frees american soldier. in other words, they have walked this very delicate line between the relationship with the taliban, which is difficult at best, and the exceptionally close economic and military relationship the emir and this country has tra dilgs naldition with the united states. >> it's so telling for you to show us that newspaper because, as you well know, the contest of having a taliban office in qatar
is something that had been in the works for some time and the hope was that by doing that it would bring the taliban into the political fold. make them more of a partner as the u.s. begins to pull out of afghanistan, as the political process needs to be standing up on its own in afghanistan. are you sensing that that is part of what is going on here and that that is seeing some fruition with this deal? >> reporter: no. i think this is -- this is separate. i think you can put this deal on one side. this is bilateral. this ensuring that they were doing something for their friendly superpower, the united states. the taliban office is both -- it's a thorn in the side, in many ways. i'll give you what i was hearing about today. when they opened it and the taliban, first of all, started to do minor news conferences, started to make press releases and those sorts of things. the qataris stomped on it.
they do not want to be seen as the acceptable face of the taliban. but at the same time, they want to navigate this role because, let's face it, the qataris have angered all of the regional powers, including the saudis and the over gcc countries over policies in other countries, like syria. so here they knew they were on safe ground with the united states. >> and one last question. i know you said you tried to get some answers this morning. so unclear if you can answer this. but what everybody here is asking is how can the u.s. and how can american citizens and citizens all around the world be confident that qatar is going to make sure that these five detainees who have now left guantanamo are not going to return to the battlefield and kill innocent people again? >> reporter: we asked that question two or three times of the foreign inmaminister. he wouldn't divulge it.
you heard susan rice today on "state of the union." the qataris keep a very tight fist. not much happens that the authorities and intelligent agents and others don't know about. but as time goes on, it will be up to them to prove to the u.s. that they have that tight watch and of course that classic line, only time will tell, but the doubters must clearly have a strong hand. >> richard quest, thank you so much. appreciate your insight. and a reminder, in 15 minutes bowe bergdahl's parents will be holding a news conference. back after a quick break. ♪
news on the golf course. now authorities are wondering if his stock purchase was out of bounds. this involves shares of clorox. authorities are investigating whether mickelson had information about the imminent takeover bid. mickelson who is playing in today's final round of the memorial and ohio, he's released a statement saying, i have done absolutely nothing wrong. i have cooperated with the government in this investigation and will continue to do so. i fish i could fully discuss this matter but under the current circumstances, it's just not possible. now, the drama surrounding the sale of the l.a. clippers has gotten uglier. donald sterling filed a $1 billion lawsuit friday against the nba. sterling says he never violated the nba constitution and a leaked recording of his racist rant violated his right to privacy and is against california law. this comes as sterling's wife
shelly agreed to sell the clippers for $2 billion to former microsoft ceo steve ballmer. i want to bring in keith reid, a former editor at epsn. i have to tell you, it's a good thing i like soapy tv shows, otherwise i wouldn't be able to follow all of this. it's unbelievable, the twists and turns in this drama. my first question is, sterling agreed not to file suit against the nba. so is it in sterling's best interests to proceed here? >> it's hard to say. you're absolutely right, dana. this is really a soap opera. this is daytime drama playing out in realtime. what you have is donald sterling, who just a few weeks ago was in total control of this nba franchise, the best basketball franchise right now in the market. and today he's in a position where he's either got to sue to
keep control of his team or let it be sold. but if he sues, apparently because of this indemnity clause, he's in a position of essentially suing his wife shelly who has made the deal with steve ballmer to buy the team for $2 billion. it is a very confusing situation right now. it appears that he doesn't -- donald sterling doesn't have many places to go except the lawsuit. of course, if he chooses -- if there's a lawsuit right now, he's essentially suing his own wife. >> well, sources tell cnn that two independent physicians found sterling mentally incapacitated within the last few weeks. now, he says, at least from an attorney, that that's an over statement. how is this going to play out, particularly since that matters with regard to how the agreement is between sterling and his wife, that if he is mentally incapacitated, that she has the authority to do what she wants to, right in. >> well, at this moment it seems
like that seems to be the case, right? he's agreed, per the rules that are set up in the family treust that the team can be sold. he's agreed to that. he actually agreed to sit down for those medical evaluations and when those evaluations were done, they came to the conclusion that he would no longer be able to be in control and shelly sterling would be in control. i don't know what he can do, unless he chooses to sue his wife as opposed to the league and if he sues his wife, is that a position you really want to be in? right now donald sterling is in a very difficult position. >> to say the least. listen, like a soap opera, we're all on pins and needles waiting for the end of this cliff hanger. amazing video of a bounce house being blown away with kids inside.
this man became the first frenchman in 37 years and the fate has yet to be repeated. >> if i woke up in paris or whatever and went up to a 15-year-old boy or girls and said, what does he do, what would he say? he would say he's a tennis player and now he's a rock star? >> no idea. most of them would say that i was a tennis player. i stopped in 1990, like 23 years ago. so it's a long time. i've had the best moment of my life more than 30 years. it's right here in my heart forever. every time i see it, every time i think about it, i'm complete.
bouncy houses with an attached slide and carried it several hundred feet before crashing down. it happened at a lacrosse tournament in littleton, colorado. one child was treated and released after being thrown by it. another was taken away in ambulance but his injuries are not believed to be serious. we have more ahead in the newsroom and it all starts right now. hello. i'm dana bash in for fredricka whitfield. i want to welcome our viewers in the united states and around the world. the parents of sergeant bowe bergdahl are going to speak live at any moment. this comes as their son leaves afghanistan after nearly five years in captivity. and a fiery plane crash in massachusetts claims seven lives. we're learning more about the victims, including the man who